Chris Mullin had an essential impact on Gilbert Arenas when he first came to the NBA, teaching him to approach the game while at the same time surprising him how good he actually was despite being retired.
Chris Mullin helped him early on in his career
Former NBA player Gilbert Arenas made a guest appearance on the Fubo Sports podcast, where he touched upon player development and what makes a good coach that teaches its players the right things about the game. For Arenas, coming to the NBA was a bit of a struggle because he had no one to show him the ropes and teach him how to play the game in the right way. Arenas was drafted by the Golden State Warriors, where he spent his first two seasons, and during his tenure with the team, it was none other than Chris Mullin who helped him expand his offensive repertoire.
As a Warriors legend, Mullin was an NBA All-Star and a member of the original Dream Team, and he used his knowledge to help younger players that were up and coming in the league, and Arenas was one of them. Arenas remembers Mullin coming out to the Warriors training facility after retiring and helping him get in a good workout and point him out in the right direction.
According to Arenas, playing 1-on-1 with Mullin helped him expand his game, and he details how he used to destroy Mullin when they were playing full court. Arenas was an athletic 20-year-old, so he had the edge over a 38-year-old Mullin, but when it came to playing 1-on-1 on half-court, this is where Mullin showcased his brilliance and dominance over a young Arenas.
Arenas couldn't stop him in practice
Chris Mullin was just getting the job in Golden State when I was there, he was training me. That's where my real training came from was from Golden State when Mullin would come down. We would play full court 1 on one and half court 1 on 1. His thing was I'm trying to stay in shape. Beat him in the full court of course. Half-court, I couldn't stop this man. I couldn't do nothing with that, he was just tearing me apart. You need someone that will challenge your John Walls, the Kyrie's guys that did things that translate to what those guys have to do now.
Gilbert Arenas, via Fubo Sports
Arenas appreciated that he got schooled adequately by Mullin because it showed him he still needs to learn a lot about the game. As a young and talented kid coming to the NBA, many players are stubborn and think they already have all the know-how to be a successful player in the league. For the most part, that is a mindset players should immediately abandon. According to Arenas, franchisees need people like Mullin to challenge the best players and show them the other aspects of the game they need to improve.